Friday, 17 May 2013

Type KiHa 40 in the Northern Island

Diesel railcars, JR Hokkaido Type KiHa 40, stand at Hakodate Station (August, 2012)

When I introduced the diesel railcar, type KiHa 40 "Hiroshima Color" in my blog (see the post on May 2nd, 2013), it reminded me of the time when I was visiting Hokkaido last summer.

Look at the photos. They are JR Hokkaido's type KiHa 40 "Hokkaido Color" standing at Hakodate Station. It is a brother of the KiHa 40 "Hiroshima color". The KiHa 40 is a standard diesel railcar for local lines. It was launched in 1977 by Japanese National Railways (JNR). The body is a white color with light green and blue colored stripes, which is so-called "Hokkaido color". It stands out against the beautiful scenery in the northern island (Hokkaido) of Japan.

I like this "JNR" style nostalgic design very much. Especially, two large rounded front lights and two panoramic front windows are my favorites. For your information, "panoramic window" is curved glass in front of the cab to secure the driver's visibility.

When JNR was privatized and split up in 1987, a total of 150 units of the KiHa 40 were taken over by JR Hokkaido. Fortunately, most of them are still being operated on the tracks in the northern island of Japan.

It is true that Hokkaido is the Kingdom of the KiHa 40. Summer in Hokkaido is a peak season for traveling. It is the time to start planning a vacation to this beautiful northern island to see the KiHa 40 again.

Frontal face of the diesel railcar, JR Hokkaido Type KiHa 40 (August, 2012)